Com­plaint takes a nasty turn

Par­ents told not to go pub­lic on faulty pram

Townsville Bulletin - - The North On Holidays - By DANIEL BATE­MAN

IT started as a com­plaint about a faulty pram col­laps­ing un­der the weight of a new­born baby but be­came far more sin­is­ter.

Kirwan’s Re­becca and Rob Hosk­ing pur­chased a new pram for their son Liam just be­fore he was born six weeks ago.

Mrs Hosk­ing was wheel­ing Liam out of the Mount Louisa Lanes bowl­ing al­ley last Satur­day when the pram sud­denly col­lapsed, throw­ing her new­born son face first on to the ground.

The in­ci­dent was wit­nessed by a child­care worker.

‘‘I just screamed and picked up the top of the pram be­cause the pram col­lapsed on top of him,’’ Mrs Hosk­ing said.

‘‘He had dirt in his mouth and a lit­tle mark on his fore­head.

‘‘I was re­ally wor­ried he had stopped breath­ing.’’

The cou­ple took the p r a m b a c k t o Toy­world, where they pur­chased it.

Toy­world re­funded their money im­me­di­ately and put them in con­tact with the man­u­fac­turer, Child­care Nurs­ery (CNP).

T h e p r a m w a s s h i p p e d t o t h e Melbourne-based com­pany which will ex­am­ine the fault and de­cide whether to re­call the prod­uct.

CNP re­cently re­called an­other of its prod­ucts, the Stel­lar high­chair, be­cause of a crack­ing fault.

But the Hosk­ings claim the com­pany did not be­lieve them when they in­formed it about the prob­lem.

‘‘They said it was all our fault,’’ Mrs Hosk­ing said.

As­pokesman for CNP who iden­ti­fied

Prod­ucts him­self as ‘ Harry’ said the news­pa­per would ‘end up mak­ing a fool of it­self’ if it went ahead with the story about the Hosk­ings’ pram.

‘‘This is the first prob­lem we’ve had,’’ he said. ‘‘It can be caused t h r o u g h o p e r a t o r mal­func­tion but we’re not go­ing to lock into any de­bate.’’

There was no prob­lem with the com­pany’s prams, the spokesman said.

‘‘You might get your fin­gers burnt if you run a story be­fore you get your facts right,’’ he said.

Fol­low­ing the in­ter- view, the Hosk­ings were later con­tacted by the same spokesman who threat­ened them if they went pub­lic with their prob­lem.

CNP’s di­rec­tor, Priscilla White, later apolog i s e d f o r h e r c o l - league’s com­ments and ac­tions. ‘‘I’ve al­ready ad­dressed that is­sue,’’ Ms White said.

She said she did not know how the pram could have col­lapsed.

‘‘Un­til we see it, we don’t know whether there was a fold or an is­sue with it. Ob­vi­ously we are very con­cerned about it and it’s on its way down here now,’’ Ms White said.

‘‘We will give it a thor­ough in­ves­ti­ga­tion and know a lot more when more peo­ple have looked at it.

‘‘We have sold this model for a very long time and have never heard of this type of in­ci­dent hap­pen­ing.’’

Owner of Bubs Baby S h o p T o w n s v i l l e Noe­lene Mondo said since her shop opened they have had four of the Com­muter model prams re­turned be­cause of a man­u­fac­tur­ing fault.

Ms Mondo said the p r o b l e m w a s t h e wheels not go­ing the right way and the clos­ing mech­a­nism not work­ing prop­erly.

‘‘I de­cided to ac­tu­ally take them out of the shop, that’s why we don’t stock them now,’’ she said. ‘‘Ev­ery­one just came in and I re­funded their money and they got new prams of an­other style.

‘‘That’s the only (pram) I’ve had a prob­lem with and a 100 per cent re­turn on.’’

She said when she con­tacted the com­pany about the prob­lem, they dealt with her with­out any prob­lems a n d r e f u n d e d promptly.

Photo:DARRENHILDER EYM28310

COVERUP . . . Re­becca Hosk­ing and her six-week-old baby Liam

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